The following is a statement from Stephen Andrew, City of Victoria Councillor and mayoral candidate, on the Town of Esquimalt’s decision to not renew its police service agreement with the City of Victoria:
“I respect Esquimalt Council’s decision. The current situation is problematic and does not serve the needs of policing throughout the region, especially Victoria.”
“I always advocated for a standalone police service, or a regional model, for Victoria. We are a city of 90,000 people in 19 sq km, but because support services are centralized in the city, we wind up bearing the cost of residents coming downtown for support. We carry an undue burden of policing the issues and challenges of the region. It must end.”
“The decision of any policing model is the jurisdiction of the provincial government; it makes the final call, as it did in 2003 when it ordered the amalgamation of the Esquimalt and Victoria police departments.”
“This decision is no reflection on the invaluable service provided by the members of the Victoria Police Department.”
“While we wait for a decision from the province, I continue to advocate for solutions that make sense for Victoria residents and taxpayers. I continue to work for collaborative solutions to enable the 400,000-people strong capital region to mitigate our unique challenges effectively and efficiently.”
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